Delhi’s Signature Bridge, twice the size of Qutub Minar, opens for public today
After a delay of eight years, Delhi’s much-awaited Signature Bridge was finally inaugurated on Sunday by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and deputy CM Manish Sisodia. The iconic bridge, which will be thrown open for vehicles on Monday, is expected to significantly reduce traffic in areas of north and northeast Delhi.
A Delhi Public Works Department (PWD) project, the bridge was constructed by the Delhi Tourism and Transport Development Corporation (DTTDC) at an expenditure of ₹1,518.37 crore. The new landmark is double the height of Qutub Minar.
One of the most delayed infrastructure projects in Delhi, the Signature Bridge is expected to reduce the travel time by at least half an hour for commuters going to Ghaziabad and areas near Uttar Pradesh border via Bhajanpura, Khajuri Khas, Yamuna Vihar in northeast Delhi from Wazirabad, Mukherjee Nagar and Burari in north Delhi.
“Every day I had to wade through heavy traffic near old Wazirabad Bridge to reach my office in Mukherjee Nagar. With the opening of the Signature Bridge it seems that my traffic woes are finally set to come to an end,” said Mubeen Khan, a Yamuna Vihar resident.
DTTDC officials, however, said that after Diwali the bridge would be closed between 11pm and 5am for around a month in order to carry out work on the glass façade atop the pylon. The façade, which will be used as a viewing gallery, would give visitors a bird’s-eye view of the city from a height of 154m. The viewing gallery will be opened for the public in February next year, officials said.
The bridge is expected to not only help motorists going towards northeast Delhi, but would also decongest the Outer Ring Road, Shahdara Bridge, ISBT Kashmiri Gate, Khajuri Khas, Bhajanpura, Old Wazirabad Bridge and Pusta Road.
Alok Kaushik, a banker, said the bridge would significantly take the traffic off from the Outer Ring Road and help the commuters going towards Noida, central and south Delhi.
“One can witness perennial traffic jam at Wazirabad Crossing and Majnu Ka Tila. Gaziabad or Loni bound commuters coming from Azadpur side had to either take Wazirabad Bridge or Shahdara flyover going via ISBT Kashmiri Gate. But with the Signature Bridge being operational, all this traffic will be shifted there. Noida and south Delhi bound commuters will get a smooth flow on Outer Ring Road,” Kaushik, who uses the stretch daily, said.
The western and eastern approaches (1.5km and 1.8km respectively) to the bridge will connect nearby areas like Timarpur, Nehru Vihar, Wazirabad, Aruna Nagar, Mukherjee Nagar on Ring Road to Bhajanpura on Mangal Pandey Marg.